In a long-anticipated decision, a federal judge in the Southern District of Texas ruled on Friday that Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals, or DACA, is unlawful under its current terms. The court granted Texas’ request for a permanent injunction and vacated the 2012 Memorandum that created DACA. The permanent injunction order may be found here.
Current DACA recipients retain their deferred action and work authorization. They may also continue to renew DACA, as may those who have been granted DACA in the past.
Initial DACA applications from first-time applicants may still be filed but will no longer be approved as of July 16, 2021. This includes applications that were in the pipeline but have not yet received an approval.
Key highlights of the decision:
- Current DACA recipients (approved on or before July 16, 2021) will NOT lose their deferred action or work authorization.
- Those who have previously been granted DACA may continue to renew.
- The Department of Homeland Security, or DHS, is permanently enjoined from granting DACA to new applicants as of July 16, 2021. First-time DACA applications that were pending on July 16, 2021 will not be approved.
- Nothing in the order changes current enforcement policies.
- The Court remanded the 2012 DACA memo and the DACA program it created to DHS for reconsideration. The agency may develop a DACA policy that complies with the law.